AirJaldi, a social enterprise based in India, is a leading innovator and implementer of technically and economically viable Internet connectivity solutions for rural areas.
Rural Broadband Pvt. Ltd., a Class A ISP (permitting it to operate all over India), uses the brand name AirJaldi networks. It was incorporated in India in 2009 with the aim of creating sustainable broadband Internet networks and solutions for rural areas. AirJaldi Networks’ activities are carried out from our management office in Delhi, our operations office in Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh and our field offices. RBB owns and operates networks in the Indian states of Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Bihar and Karnataka. Our networks serve thousands of organizational, enterprise, non-profit, community-based and individual clients.
We think of our networks as “Retail Ecologies”: all too often, rural areas are subject to partial provisioning of internet services, typified by the use of singular, non-scalable solutions (e.g. VSAT, dongles, mobile devices connectivity) or customer-specific, costly and exclusive WiFi connections (mostly banks and other enterprises capable of affording connectivity).
AirJaldi’s philosophy and business model, emanating from years of working on connectivity issues in rural India, is based on creating networks that are meant, BY DESIGN, to reach out to ALL potential clients at a reasonable price. Each relay is built to reach specific clients; each client is potentially a relay to other clients.
Allowing our networks the ability to grow organically and quickly respond to demand increases the sustainability of our networks. It also contributes to our ultimate goal – reaching out to a large number of users in rural areas.
No. of Networks | AirJaldi presently owns and runs ten networks in six Indian states:
Overall coverage of Networks | ~24,200 km2
Team members | 90
Accounts | More than 60,000*
Users/beneficiaries | ~100,000**
Longest Wireless link | 54 Km.
* This number includes fixed wireless and hotspot clients.
** Many of our clients are institutions and business. These clients in turn enable access to multiple
users. The number provided here is an estimate of the number of these users/ beneficiaries).
Some notable institutional clients of AirJaldi include:
In our years of operation, AirJaldi worked, and in some cases continues to work, with organizations that share our vision of reaching to rural areas with high-quality connectivity, such as the Ford Foundation, UC Berkeley, ISIF Asia and leading technology companies. We are also working closely with the Government of India’s BBNL8, which is reaching out to rural areas of India with fiber infrastructure. AirJaldi plans to build last-mile access networks in at least two BBNL locations within the coming year.
AirJaldi Research & Innovation also operates The AirJaldi Network Academy, a training and capacity-building center, where network operators and activists can acquire the skills to build and manage rural wireless networks.
Training Locations | Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh; Selakui, Uttarakhand; Ranchi, Jharkhand; Bangalore, Karnataka.
Courses on offer | Wireless basics (“Wireless 108”), Advanced Wireless (“Wireless 216”)
No. of courses given | Over 20
No. of people trained | >600
No. workshops organized or facilitated | 5, with over 100 participants
We believe in contributing to rural areas not only by bringing connectivity, but also by creating employment in areas where we have networks. If you share this vision, if you are enthusiastic about our work, if you are willing to work hard and grow with us professionally and otherwise, you might want to join our passionate team.
In order to do so, we’d like you to send us a resume and a cover letter describing yourself and reasons you think having you onboard will be a good choice for both you and us. We promise to respond! Please send your application to firstname.lastname@example.org
Jim Forster | Chairman of the Board
Alok Gupta | Director
Manoj Arora | Director
Michael Ginguld | Director
Hello! I’m Jim Forster, Chairman of AirJaldi. Actually, I’m Chairman of Rural Broadband Pvt Ltd, which is the name of the company that runs the AirJaldi service.
Since my first trip to India in 2006, I have been certain that good quality and affordable Internet could be brought to rural India. We are doing it now, thanks to a really great team, and the results are clear: whether you’re in Himachal Pradesh, Uttrakhand, Jharkhand and other states, if you’re an AirJaldi customer, then you can get to the same Internet as if you were in Delhi, Gurgaon, Mumbai, Kolkata, etc. This is obvious and at the same time profound: previously one had to move to a city to do any number of things. Cities are large and crowded for a reason: they had better services than the rural areas. But now people and businesses in AirJaldi districts can have the same ICT services (phones, computers, and Internet) as those in the cities.
Until now AirJaldi’s service has been fixed wireless Internet: we bring the Internet to a place. This is great for businesses, schools, and some individuals. Many people now have smart phones and use them as they go about their day as their primary Internet device. The mobile operators — BSNL, Airtel, etc, have done a great job providing voice, SMS, and mobile broadband to the country. AirJaldi can deliver the same Internet to these same devices, but much faster by using WiFI. We won’t have service all over the hills and fields, so you’ll still use your mobile service there, but in places we have service you can save money and have 4G+ speed by using AirJaldi. We’re starting to test this; you’ll hear more about this shortly.
I mentioned our great team briefly, but I should say more. These people are your neighbors and fellow townspeople. They’ve learned how build the network to bring high speed Internet to your business or house, and are on a mission to do this with respectful and attentive customer service. Our customers depend on the Internet we provide. Our team knows this and will do what it takes to help you.